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Columbia Gas: Nearly 36 Miles Of Pipeline Replaced Since Merrimack Valley Explosions

BOSTON (CBS/AP) — The utility company involved in last month's explosions and fires in Massachusetts says it has replaced nearly 36 miles of main pipeline in the area. Columbia Gas announced Sunday that it's 80 percent through its work replacing 45 miles of the main pipeline, and about halfway through its work replacing 6,100 service lines to homes and businesses.

The Sept. 13 explosions and fires killed a teenager and injured at least 25 other people.

The company says 151 construction crews are expected to continue work Sunday in Lawrence, Andover and North Andover.

In North Andover, the following areas are closed due to gas-related roadwork: Francis Street, Union Street from Waverly Street to Patriot Street, and there are detours on Main Street at Elm Street and Greene Street.

Federal authorities say natural gas lines became overpressurized after Columbia Gas failed to account for critical pressure sensors as workers replaced century-old cast-iron pipes in Lawrence.

On Saturday, Columbia Gas also tweeted a warning to customers that a scam notification has been going around. They posted a picture of a real note from Columbia Gas versus a fake one. "Columbia Gas door hangers have our logo and phone number," they explained. "Please call us at 1-866-388-3239 if you are not sure about a note, phone call, email or person claiming to be affiliated with us."

The company says it has paid $23 million in claims from customers.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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